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Will I be able to use Circuit Python for my project?
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Will I be able to use Circuit Python for my project?

by Robert_Beatty on Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:27 pm

Hello CircuitPython experts,

My daughters and I build Mars Rovers and other robots as interactive exhibits for museums (www.beatty-robotics.com). In the past we used Arduino Mega and Nano for all our projects. We are currently building a new robot that uses a Metro M0 Express as its microcontroller. I am interested/intrigued by the idea of porting our existing Arduino code to Circuit Python and using Circuit Python as our language from this point forward. Does Circuit Python currently have libraries and/or other support for the following areas?

1. Transmitting and receiving text through the Serial1 port on pin 0 and 1. (for an xBee radio)
2. Transmitting and receiving text through the Serial2 port on pin 10 and 11. (for controlling and getting feedback from the Robotclaw motor controller)
3. Controlling 8 servos through the Adafruit servo shield (I2C).
4. Controlling 2 Neopixel strips (8 pixels each).
5. Controlling and reading object distance data from 2 LIDAR Lite V3 (Garmin)(I2C device). In the Arduino program, we are using Garmin's LIDAR Arduino library, but they don't provide a Python or Circuit Python library.

It is the last item in particular that I am worried we will encounter a roadblock on. I'm also worried about item #2.

If some of these items are NOT currently easily supported or easily available, but are possible through some lower level programming (i.e. creating our own libraries), are there any people or other resources where we could bring in some help for doing this? Our Arduino program is relatively simple, but it does depend upon the LIDAR library, Servo shield library, Neopixel library, etc.

Robert_Beatty
 
Posts: 55
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 9:29 pm

Re: Will I be able to use Circuit Python for my project?

by tannewt on Sun Aug 27, 2017 5:57 pm

Hi Robert!
That sounds like an amazing project! I'd love to see pictures. Is it time sensitive at all? The Python code does tend to run slower overall.

#1 and #2 should be doable with the busio.UART class.
#3 Depends on the shield. Think you mean this one. There is a CircuitPython library for it here.
#4 Two neopixel strips are easy and use the driver here
#5 We don't have a driver for that chip but I2C is pretty easy with the I2CDevice helper.

So, I think we have you mostly covered. All of the libraries I mention are in the bundle.

It'd be worth a shot. Keep us posted!

tannewt
 
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Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:48 pm

Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.